“Island Lez Talk: an emerging new voice in the LGBT community”

“Island Lez Talk: an emerging new voice in the LGBT community”

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Tasheka LaVann

After making the difficult decision to leave her country of birth for fear of being harmed due to her sexual orientation, former News Anchor/Television Host and Miss Antigua and Barbuda 2007 – Tasheka LaVann has decided to use her life story as a platform to give voice to the many issues that affect the LGBT community and by extension the world at large.

LaVann has embarked on a YouTube channel called “Island Lez Talk”, which has been reaching thousands of people across the Caribbean and as far as the UK, North America and even Africa.

According to a press release from the host, Island Lez Talk is dedicated to discussing issues that affect everyday people in general, especially those who are constantly marginalized and discriminated against. My channel was inspired by my life as a public figure living in the Caribbean and by my LGBTQ family in particular, because for many years I sat and watched many of my brothers and sisters being attacked by society and felt powerless. 

Sharing a part of her life that most in her own family aren’t even aware of, Lavann says, “What finally moved me to act was my personal fight to be who I am in the last years especially. I have been attacked, threatened and humiliated by a homophobic society who only sees what they are taught and that is to hate anything and anyone who is different from what they deem to be the “norm”. 

Tasheka LaVann
Tasheka LaVann

Lavann also points out the flaws within the Law Enforcement system in her hometown. “Sadly, this belief also runs deep in the institution responsible for protecting people in Antigua and Barbuda. I was laughed at when I reached out to the police for help when I was being threatened and stalked by a group that thought I didn’t deserve to exist because of my sexuality. This is what many people are dealing with across the Caribbean and the world.”

Having embarked on this new programLavann says her background in Journalism along with her studies at UWI Mona in Jamaica and as a motivational speaker, have allowed her to see the challenges being faced not only by the LGBT community, but by others dealing with issues of Bullying, Self-Hatred, HIV/AIDS Discrimination, Relationships, Achieving Goals and Fitness, all of which will be discussed on her channel. 

“We posted our first episode on Monday and since then I have cried every day because of the stories being shared with me of how inspiring Island Lez Talk has been for viewers. People are crying out for help and isolating themselves due to the stigma ad discrimination in all forms that have taken over our society. My aim is to not sit quietly and think that because I have relocated to Canada that everything is ok now; I am here to let my Caribbean brothers and sisters especially within the LGBT community know that I hear them and understand their struggle to live without being persecuted.” 

The “Island Lez Talk” YouTube channel will also feature tips on beauty and fashion, music and life in the Caribbean.  

To subscribe to island Lez Talk, see the following link: (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQkVfRNtKCY3uA693Q49OJA). For more information and updates, join the host on Facebook (Tasheka S. Lavann) and on Instagram (@theanchorlady1) or send emails to islandleztalk@gmail.com

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